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Loans promised to overseas departments and territories

France has promised to lend money to airlines in its overseas territories affected by the Covid-19 epidemic.

Overseas Minister Annick Girardin made the commitment to the National Assembly after being told that their bankruptcy would constitute an economic and social disaster.

Photo: Provided

Last month, several foreign carriers, including Air Tahiti Nui, collectively requested government loans totaling more than $ 1 billion after Air France was helped with a $ 7 billion loan.

Ms. Girardin said that if there was collective responsibility, there had to be cooperation with shareholders.

She added that Air Tahiti Nui and Aircalin were already benefiting from guaranteed loans from the French government to help struggling businesses.

New Caledonia and French Polynesia have lost regular services to and from Paris.

Air Tahiti Nui extended the suspension of its flights until July after Air France decided to wait for flights to resume.

The French government flies an Air Tahiti Nui chartered plane to Paris every ten days, mainly to collect medical supplies.

He also reportedly chartered a French Bee plane to carry 20 tonnes of cargo to Tahiti this week.

The airline had been criticized for leaving many travelers stranded when the lockdown loomed in March.

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